Marie Andreolli, a writer for Global Ministries, has outlined many of the changes taking place in the wake of the move of Global Ministries Offices to Atlanta. Below, is her description of the broader view and scope of Global Health in the new paradigm.
Global Health is a renewed priority of Global Ministries, now constituting a distinct unit working in close collaboration with the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR). As the denomination’s Imagine No Malaria campaign draws to a close, the next step in its commitment to Global Health is a new signature health initiative that will be formally introduced in Portland. The new initiative is Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children. Its goal is to reach 1 million children with lifesaving interventions by 2020. Its name is derived from the Gospel of John 10:10: “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (NRSV)
The U.S. component of the Abundant Health initiative is geared toward engaging 10,000 churches to organize and implement health solutions in the parish and its neighboring communities.
The motivation to launch Abundant Health: Our Promise to Children emerged from an extensive survey of persons in 59 countries. The results show that the top international health challenges are maternal and child health, water and sanitation, hunger and nutrition, and access to health care. They show that the top U.S. health challenges are mental health, non-communicable diseases, substance abuse, and aging and the elderly.